FINISH BEFORE YOU START
Genius is being able to visualize the finish line or the finished product before you begin the race or the task.
The late Dr. Howard Hendricks, a brilliant seminary professor often said, “Any fool can tell you what’s wrong, genius is telling you what is right.”
At a race track, coaches will tell you the toughest moments are the last 5 to 10 steps. There is a strong tendency to coast the last few steps. Running strong through the tape is the extra difference between winning and losing.
In basketball, coaches will tell you the final two minutes of the 1st half and the final two minutes of the game are the difference between winning and losing. Easy to start, but hard to finish is an axiom in basketball. Finishing strong is crucial.
Homebuilders will tell you the final 1% is the most difficult part of finishing a house. One successful home builder said, “Never pay a builder all of the bill until all the work has been completed because you likely won’t see the builder again.”
The late Ray Eberley, an attorney, was a very wise man. Ray shared 3 pearls of wisdom with me:
- When you find your soulmate for life. It is not if you should get married, it’s how soon.
- You’re not ready to die until you’re ready to live.
- It is far easier to live well than die well. Dying well is really difficult. (For months and month’s cancer-ridden Ray prayed he would go home to be with his Lord.)
Squeezing the extra 2-3% out of the week makes a difference between good and great; great and sensational, and sensational to out of this world.
Finishing strong begins before you start. You need the eyes to see the end result before you even begin the task.
This works in every area of your life, even parenting.
Two wise parents visualized, before their children were born, five qualities they wished their children to have when they left home. They saw the finish before they started.
These were the five qualities of the finish line:
- Children see the Bible as the ultimate truth and choose to obey these truths.
- Children will love and worship God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.
- Children have an active, meaningful, and fruitful prayer life.
- Children would love to work hard and find their passion and purpose for their lives.
- Children would love people more than they would love things. They would use things to serve people; not serve things and use people to get more of them.
The greatest teachers of the spirit were a couple, where the father of learning was imitation and the mother of learning was repetition.
The wise parents knew if they repeatedly lived in such a way their children could imitate them and their children would reach these goals.
Cold hard reality. If you want to change, you first must change yourself. If you can see the finished outcome, pursue it with passion, and run through the tape with the never quit attitude. You will do amazing things to the glory of God and for those you love.